Saturday, August 31, 2013


This blog is devoted to music of all types and those who create it. Please read on as I ask a small favor of those who kindly stop by to regularly read the posts here. I really do appreciate it.

A friend of mine is currently reaching out to folks who regularly utilize social media to engage and help support a very worthy endeavor. His name is Gordie Sampson and his CV as a musician/songsmith is quite impressive. He won a Grammy Award in 2007 for best country song of the year for Carrie Underwood’s smash hit “Jesus, Take the Wheel,” co-written with Brett James and Hillary Lindsey. Not to mention all of Sampson’s other hit songs, awards and achievements.

Sampson, who earned an honourary doctor of letters degree from Cape Breton University earlier this year, hasn’t forgotten where he comes from, either culturally or musically.

Continuing that legacy of strong, sophisticated songwriting perpetuated by Cape Bretoners such as Rita MacNeil, Allister MacGillivray and Jimmy Rankin, he’s found a unique way to nurture it in a younger generation of multi-genre musicians with the annual four-day Gordie Sampson Songcamp in Ingonish.

The Gordie Sampson Songcamp is fortunate to have The Ceilidh Cup golf tournament choose to donate funds from their annual event to assist Songcamp in expanding its activities throughout the year.

This means that the Gordie Sampson Songcamp has access to a $25,000 matching dollars fund where every dollar fundraised in 2013 has the potential to be matched by Softchoice Cares on a first come first serve basis for Ceilidh Cup 2014. Songcamp is also competing in the “P2P Challenge” for the remaining $25,000. First place receives $15,000, second place receives $7,500 and third place receives $2,500. Being a part of this Softchoice Cares is an excellent opportunity for future Songcamp funding.

To earn points in the challenge, a Facebook page called Ceilidh Cup for Gordie Sampson Songcamp has been created. Here’s the link

So what am I asking of you?

1. “Like” their page (They get 1 point for each "like")

2. “Share” their posts with your friends on Facebook (1 point for each)

3. “Comment” on their posts and page (1 point for each)

4. “Post” any pictures, videos and comments on their page and your pages (5 points for every post – these could be posts of any of their musical guests’ songs, videos, pics)

5. Encourage all your friends on Facebook to Like, Share, Comment and Post on their page.

6. “Tweet” a link to their page, videos, pics that are posted on Facebook to encourage more people to check them out.

This challenge goes to October 18th. With your kind help you can really make some impact. All you need to do is "like" and share the news on social media. Thanks again in advance!

Sunday, August 25, 2013


Joseph Bridge has just released a taster single with accompanying video and the industry buzz surrounding his efforts is growing exponentially.

"Phyllis the Parking Meter Lady" is a stunning exercise in creativity, esoteric beauty and economy, wrapped in a hook that ranks with the best that you've ever had the pleasure to encounter. Joining Joseph on the track is UK singer/songwriter Ian McNabb, who raises the game with his peerless vocals. All of the excitement and eclecticism that powered classic elite pop/rock anthems is present here with high production values, great musicianship and originality.

Remember a time when radio provided a diverse group of sounds and was never sparing on surprises? While it is new, this record has a timeless quality that will quickly earn a coveted position in your music collection and remain fresh when all other contemporary flavors of the week fall victim to obsolescence.

Phyllis was recently crowned record of the week in Holland and is now garnering airplay in the UK and Canada.

Over the next few days, I will be featuring two more fantastic new songs from Joseph Bridge. Stay tuned!

Find out more about the artist here

Issue of a full length disc is planned for fall 2014.

Thursday, August 08, 2013


The Great American Robber Barons have just issued a subtle, quiet song cycle that features the majestic crystalline lead guitar of Keith Dion, impassioned powerhouse vocals from Diana Mangano and masterful songcraft. They are joined by drummer Prairie Prince and jazz pianist Ricardo Scales.

Reno Nevada... and Other Songs of Gambling, Vice and Betrayal is a stellar debut record.

Keith’s lyrics are poignant, political, and literate. His poetic social commentary covers the 99% (“At The Hands Of The Robber Barons”), the atrocities of war, gun control, animal rights (“Conquistador” and “You Don’t Know The Half Of It”), and women’s rights. He also explores the painful complexities of growing up as a child of a Vietnam veteran.

Keith: “Every song on the album is about gambling, vice and betrayal, and we really mean it.”

Underpinning this subject matter with incredibly deft playing from all involved, as a listener you get a sense of space in the notes that they purposely don't play. The arrangements perfectly frame Diana and Keith's vocals, never overpowering them. Traces of the Byrds, Nick Cave, Lou Reed and Judy Collins are detected in the mix, though these elements are merely a reference point for those who want to get a preview of what the album has on offer. Highlights include "I Know You Just Don't Want Me Anymore" with Mangano turning in a dynamite vocal and their cover of Richard Farina's "Reno, Nevada" which has a dark, smoky vibe that lingers in your brain. The delicate, delayed guitar figures are the icing on the cake. Much to be commended here, though you would be advised to take in the entire disc to fully appreciate what Keith has to say. There are great rewards in store for those who take the time to seek this one out. Overall, it's an extremely satisfying listen.

Get your hands on Reno Nevada... and Other Songs of Gambling, Vice and Betrayal right here

Hit and like their Facebook page and find out more about the group.

Sunday, August 04, 2013


Admittedly, I'm late to the party on this one. Last night, I watched Beware of Mr. Baker only hours after being made aware of its existence. Director Jay Bulger approaches his subject directly and the end product is stellar. For those who know of the massive influence Ginger Baker has had on everyone who picked up sticks in his wake, you will love this documentary.

And the uninitiated? Track this down and velcro yourself in for a gripping 90 minutes on the edge of your seat with a legend. His personal life is certainly not for the innocent, though all is explored frankly. No punches are pulled, as you'll see in the trailer.

Find and watch this movie! Once done, read his autobiography Ginger Baker: Hellraiser to fill in the gaps.

Ginger Baker's Air Force, Beat Club in 1970

Check out the Facebook official fan page here